Heavy Rain and Thunderstorms Hit Bulgaria: Yellow Code Alert in 13 Regions

Environment | May 23, 2024, Thursday // 08:45|  views

A yellow code for heavy rainfall has been issued today for 13 regions in Bulgaria. These include Vidin, Vratsa, Montana, Pleven, Lovech, Plovdiv, Pazardzhik, Gabrovo, Smolyan, Veliko Tarnovo, Stara Zagora, as well as Sofia-city and Sofia-region.

The country will experience predominantly significant cloudiness, with cumulus and cumulus-rainy clouds. Many areas, particularly in Western and Central Bulgaria, will see precipitation. Thunderstorms are also expected in some regions, with conditions ripe for local intense phenomena, including significant rainfall and hail. A moderate northwesterly wind will blow, with maximum temperatures ranging between 19° and 24°, and around 19° in Sofia.

Over the mountains, cumulus clouds will develop, leading to short-term rain and thunder. Above 2700 meters, the precipitation will be snow. A moderate north-northwest wind is anticipated, with temperatures at 1200 meters around 14° and 7° at 2000 meters.

The Black Sea coast will see variable cloudiness, more significant on the southern coast, accompanied by short-term rain and thunder. A moderate wind will blow, with maximum temperatures between 19° and 21°. Sea water temperatures will be 17°-18°.

Last night in the capital, heavy rain and hail led to numerous reports of flooded streets, blocked manholes, and fallen trees and branches. The "Mladost," "Musagenitsa," and "Suhata Reka" neighborhoods were particularly affected, as reported by the fire department.

Krasimir Dimitrov, director of the "Emergency Assistance and Prevention" Directorate in the Capital Municipality, told BNR that they received over 230 signals, with more than 45 already addressed. Over 18 teams worked through the night following the storm in Sofia.

Dimitrov assured that the situation is returning to normal. Emergency teams evacuated two kindergartens, a home for the elderly, a large shopping center, and a transport tunnel. Though there were about 230 reports, the water had receded in many places before teams arrived.

Some rivers saw a rise of 1.80 meters but levels are now decreasing, according to Dimitrov, who noted that the closure of Sofia's ring road was avoided. No significant human or material damage occurred.

Since 2010, there has been a regulation on lightning protection for the power grid. Hristomir Ivanov, a lightning protection expert, explained to BNR that the ordinance outlines recommended measures to protect against power surges. His comments followed an incident where an electrical panel in central Sofia caught fire during yesterday's storm, possibly due to a lightning strike.

Ivanov highlighted that lightning activity in Bulgaria has increased nearly tenfold in recent years.

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Tags: rainfall, Bulgaria, weather

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